Optimizing the Point-Source Emission Rates and Geometries of Pheromone Mating Disruption Mega-Dispensers

T. C. Baker, A. J. Myrick, K. C. Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


High-emission-rate “mega-dispensers” have come into increasing use for sex pheromone mating disruption of moth pests over the past two decades. These commercially available dispensers successfully suppress mating and reduce crop damage when they are deployed at very low to moderate densities, ranging from 1 to 5/ha to 100–1000/ha, depending on the dispenser types and their corresponding pheromone emission rates. Whereas traditionally the emission rates for successful commercial mating disruption formulations have been measured in terms of amounts (usually milligram) emitted by the disruptant application per acre or hectare per day, we suggest that emission rates should be measured on a per-dispenser per-minute basis. In addition we suggest, because of our knowledge concerning upwind flight of male moths being dependent on contact with pheromone plume strands, that more attention needs to be paid to optimizing the flux within plume strands that shear off of any mating disruption dispenser’s surface. By measuring the emission rates on a per-minute basis and measuring the plume strand concentrations emanating from the dispensers, it may help improve the ability of the dispensers to initiate upwind flight from males and initiate their habituation to the pheromone farther downwind than can otherwise be achieved. In addition, by optimizing plume strand flux by paying attention to the geometries and compactness of mating disruption mega-dispensers may help reduce the cost of mega-dispenser disruption formulations by improving their behavioral efficacy while maintaining field longevity and using lower loading rates per dispenser.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)896-907
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Chemical Ecology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Biochemistry


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